Dick Barrie's picture

I like to jiggle things.

Mainly statistics these days, but….

Here’s some facts’n’figgers I’ve recently been jiggling, assisted as always by the magnificent statistics maintained by our long-serving super-statto Gavin Renton…….

I started my research by thinking about how much the magnificent Kevin B Doolan has contributed to Bandits’ fortunes since his first, early season with us in 2002 and more recently since ‘coming home’ to Shielfield in 2014.

Kev’s withdrawal from team racing leaves him 7th in the all-time list of Berwick point-scorers with a grand total of 2,099 points, --- including bonus points, which I maintain should also be included in calculation of the BSPA averages --- and is a pretty fair achievement, given he stands behind only Messrs Meldrum, Jones, Rymel, Grant, McDermott and Makovsky in that table.

For the record, Willie Templeton, Bruce Cribb and Charlie McKinna complete the Top Ten. Mark Courtney is eleventh.

Mentioning bonus points, no Bandit has notched more of the things than Rob Grant – he has 438, which is some going.

But enough of the dim and distant past, who among the currently-named squad might be ready to climb into the higher reaches of such an honourable hit parade?

Well, Dany Gapp is at this moment 36th in the standings on 699.

Spud’s 53rd with 492, Jye has 541 and lies 48th, NBJ is 70th (374) and Coty is 96th with 249 points – even young Leon, with just a season served, has 136 points logged, placing him at #123.

When we realise this is a list with over 300 names on it, these guys are already all in the upper half of the roster and repaying the promotion’s faith in maintaining a settled squad over recent seasons.

There are also some familiar names at lower levels….

In the 1970s, Peter Waite (#205) notched 36 points in his 27 matches

Gary Flint collected 2 points from 4 outings to soar up to #276, but Scott Courtney stands at #178 and can boast of recording 56 points after 9 matches – although, as a caveat it should be noted Scott’s matches were all at Conference League level.

Then there’s #302 -- Rory Schlein. The Roo-boy had one match for us, but scored no points. He may not have fancied the track that night.

Finally, while I’m jiggling all these figures, when it comes to maximums (which seem to be much harder to bag these days than back in the ‘seventies -- why?) Jye Etheridge leads the current pack with two full houses – the same number as Rob Woffinden, Ricky Ashworth and Jimmy Nilsen – but rather trailing in the wake of our best-ever maximum men Steve McDermott (39), Graham Jones (33) and Wayne Brown with 26.

There you go – a nice wee jiggle!

In closing, I’ll just highlight something all good speedway-followers should know about (and support, in whatever way they can) which is the annual BenFund Bonanza, this year being staged at Scunthorpe on Saturday, March 14th (2pm). The good work provided to injured and out-of-luck riders by the SRBF is sadly under-funded, and the need for a successful Bonanza to start each season is vital to their – deserving – cause.

Following that one, the next really important date (in my eyes) is our own Press’n’Practice evening on March 28th – with more than a few of us avidly awaiting sight of the first bikes on the new super-highway that is Shielfield Park!

It’s going to be such a attraction, we should be selling programmes!

Want to disagree with Dick (as so many do?). He is always happy to hear from interesting people at dick@crystalfm.co.uk